Thick, fluffy, soft, gluten-free Sugar Cookie Bars are the perfect recipe to make this Spring. Forget making individual sugar cookies; instead make these quick and easy bars!
Are cookie bars better than cookies?!
These might just be.
My recipe is made with basic ingredients, PLUS one secret ingredient that takes the flavor to the next level.
My family can’t get enough!
Forget rolling each individual cookie and topping them just right with frosting and sprinkles. Sugar Cookie Bars are incredibly easy and great for a small gathering.
Use whatever color of sprinkles you’d like, so these crowd pleasing bars are flexible for many different parties and occasions. After all, who doesn’t like sugar cookies?!
There’s a few important things to know first, before you start baking.
First, be sure to use a high quality gluten-free all purpose flour blend (with xantham gum) in these Sugar Cookie Bars. I recommend this one.
It works in every recipe for me, and I’ve heard from several people that they had no idea the dessert I baked was even gluten-free.
Next, your extracts!
Be sure to use both vanilla and almond extract. I know almond extract is an extra ingredient you may not already have on hand, but it’s worth the buy. Just a touch adds a depth of flavor that’s a must have for me.
So, what’s this secret ingredient?
Cream cheese. Just half a block of cream cheese adds a tang and moist texture to these cookies. Most Sugar Cookie Bars don’t use cream cheese, but I’ve found it’s just what these bars need.
How to personalize these…
If you’d like to get extra festive for a party or Holiday, you can easily add a little food coloring to your frosting. You can also use different colored sprinkles.
Here’s a few ideas:
- St. Patrick’s Day: green frosting with green & gold sprinkles
- Easter: pink or purple frosting with pastel sprinkles
- Christmas: red or green frosting with red & green sprinkles
- 4th of July: red frosting with red, white & blue sprinkles
- Halloween: orange frosting with black & orange sprinkles
- New Year’s: white frosting with gold sprinkles
The options are endless! And how pretty are these bars too?!
Loaded with Sugar Cookie flavor, but in bar form, these are a such a fun and easy dessert.
After you make these, let me know what you think! Leave a comment and rating below, and/or find me on Instagram and tag me in your picture.
- 1/2 cup butter, softened
- 3/4 cup sugar
- 4 oz cream cheese
- 1 tbsp vanilla extract
- 1/2 tsp almond extract
- 1 egg
- 1 1/2 cups gluten-free all purpose flour
- 1/2 tsp baking powder
- 1/4 tsp salt
- 6 tbsp butter
- 1 1/2 cups powdered sugar
- 1 1/2 tbsp milk
- 1/2 tsp vanilla
To begin, preheat your oven to 350. Line a 9×9 pan with parchment paper (with two ends sticking out for easy removal).
To a large mixing bowl, add your butter and sugar and beat them together with a mixer till creamy. Add your cream cheese, vanilla and almond extracts and beat together till smooth. Add your egg and briefly blend it in.
To the same bowl, add your flour, baking powder and salt. Mix everything together till you have a thick, smooth batter.
Add the batter to your pan and spread it out into a thin, even layer. (I recommend using a non-stick sprayed spatula to spread it easily.)
Bake in the oven for 20-23 minutes, or till a toothpick inserted comes out clean. Let cool entirely before topping with frosting.
To a mixing bowl, add your butter, powdered sugar, milk and vanilla extract. Beat with a mixer till creamy and smooth.
Spread the frosting across the top of the bars. Top with sprinkles.
Remove from pan and cut into 16 bars. Devour!
Stored in the fridge, these taste best within the first 3-4 days. Let them sit out to come to room temperature, or microwave briefly (8-10 seconds or so).